Sports Transportation

Second Bike Lane Meeting Reviews Hybrid Concept with Boston’s First “Cycle Track”

Did you miss the second community meeting on the North End Bike Lane? Watch the video above!

On June 6, 2011, the City’s Boston Bikes program held a second public meeting on a proposed bike lane along Atlantic Avenue and Commercial Street in the North End. Unfortunately, the meeting was not well attended by residents so city officials will also request time on next month’s agendas for the North End / Waterfront Neighborhood Council (NEWNC) and North End / Waterfront Residents’ Association (NEWRA).

The “hybrid” concept, shown below remains the most popular option, with a buffered “cycle track” on the harbor side street and a regular painted lane on the interior side.

The hybrid proposed concept would remove 5-10 parking spaces (6% of total). It was also mentioned that proposed city ordinances would allow Segways to use the bike lanes.

All of the designs presented remove one southbound lane from Commercial St. and Atlantic Ave. This would result in two northbound lanes and one southbound lane. According to the City’s analysis, the loss of one southbound lane will not have a material impact on traffic congestion.


(Click to enlarge, Courtesy City of Boston, Bikes Program)


Bolstered by strong support from Mayor Menino, the City is introducing bike lanes in many neighborhoods throughout Boston. The bike lanes would provide North Enders and visitors a link to four areas:  1) Charlestown, 2) the Charles River path 3) future Greenway bike lanes and 4) Harborwalk. The City’s consultants have been working with residents and bike advocate groups on concepts that would minimize the loss of parking spaces while increasing the safety of bicyclists.

The proposed hybrid route has a buffered “cycle track” lane on the harbor side of the street (northbound) and a standard painted lane next to traffic on the interior side (southbound) of the street. The northbound cycle track lane creates a dedicated lane away from vehicle traffic next to the curb. This moves the parked cars away from the curb further into the street. The buffered cycle track could also have flexible bollards to define the area between the bike lane and parked cars. On the southbound side of the street, the bike lane is more standard where parked cars would stay next to the curb and the proposed bike lane would be in the road next to vehicle traffic.

Comments on the North End Bike Lane can be emailed to

View the City’s Boston Bikes program website.